Regular readers will realise that the layout and organisation of the site has changed. Here are a few tips on finding stuff. Remember, you can search for anything using the little magnifying glass in the top menu.

Every post is tagged with one or more 'general' tags; principles, practice, health, science or equipment. Pagden's artificial swarm is tagged 'practice' for obvious reasons. These general tags are not mutually exclusive; a post on miticide resistance might cover the underlying science and practical ways you can avoid it.

Top menu, pull down menu and search

The top menu includes links to these five 'general' tags. In addition, individual posts are followed by a short list of other articles that 'You might also like ... ', which share the same general tag. You can see more by selecting the 'Load more' button.

Primary and additional tags

In addition to the general tag(s), every post has one to three additional tags (of ~60 in total) e.g. swarm-control, beginners, inspections.

Post title and primary tag

One of these is a primary tag and is displayed above the post title in small capital letters. A post on Pagden's artificial swarm carries a primary tag of 'swarm-control' but is also tagged 'beginners' as it is the method that is most often taught to new beekeepers.

You can find links to a few of the most important tags somewhere under the ellipsis (...) in the top menu. 'Important' as defined by me, and these may change. The 'All tags' menu item lists all the tags used (or will once I've written the relevant code).


I'm a scientist and use footnotes a lot. Usually they contain non-essential information, references or poor jokes. Footnotes are indicated with a small numbered graphic which you must select (click on) to reveal.

Footnotes ... you need to select them to view them

Footnotes require JavaScript and so do not work in emailed newsletters. Instead, they appear as a number in double curly brackets and are listed at the bottom of the email. They also do not work if you have JavaScript turned off in your browser (but why would you do that?). To get the 'full fat' immersive reading experience, follow the 'View in browser' link under the title of the post in the emailed newsletter.


I'm using a third party commenting system as it was the only way of transferring the thousands of comments already submitted. You can only read or make comments on a post if you are a subscriber to The Apiarist. This helps reduce spam and encourages reader engagement.

You cannot comment by email. If you receive the emailed newsletter and want to comment, select the little speech bubble at the bottom of the post ... it will take you to the web page. You may still need to sign in.

You need to have a username to comment and to be signed in ... subscribers imported from the last server will need to edit their account profile to add a username, as only their email was imported. See the Help! page for further details.

Some posts - particularly old ones - are closed for comments.


Beekeeping is a seasonal activity; I try and ensure that some of the posts are appropriate for the month in which they are published. Posts on queen rearing are more likely to appear in May than November.

The archives page (linked from the menu at the bottom of the page) has links to every post that has appeared each month or year this site has existed. Remember that ~50 posts appear each year, and I've been posting for over 10 years; the pages display the 5 most recent posts, but you can see older posts by selecting (repeatedly if needed) the 'Load more' button.

Mobile users

Many readers access this site from their mobile phone or tablet. Your reading experience will be slightly different. The top menu (amusingly termed a hamburger menu) and bottom menu have a different appearance from the desktop, but the same content.

Back to the top

Longer posts should carry a combined progress indicator and back to the top link in the bottom right-hand corner (see the image above). The button below it takes you to the subscription portal, or - if you are already subscribed and signed in - your account details.

Combined progress bar and 'back to the top' link

Contact me

I can be emailed via the contact menu option at the bottom of the page. However, I am very unlikely to be able to offer specific beekeeping advice ... at least not in a timely fashion.

Firstly, diagnosing problems remotely is difficult, frustrating and largely guesswork. Secondly, I'm too busy writing, giving talks and keeping my own bees and so it might take a week or two for a response.

Or longer.

Your bees will have swarmed by then ... or starved.